19 February 2003

One of the greatest comforts in the believer's heart is the knowledge of their Lord's faithfulness. When it seems that the Lord has forgotten us and that our prayers go no higher than our heads, it is of great consolation to remember the words that Paul gave as encouragement to his Hebrew brethren that God had spoken long ago: "I will never leave thee nor forsake thee."

Faithfulness is the backbone of anything good: a marriage, being a parent, an employee, a church member, even being an American citizen. Without faithfulness, things, good things, are broken down and are always less than what they should be. I would like to tell you about how faithful man has been to his Creator; how faithful Adam and Eve were in the morning of time, when everything was "good and very good"; how that David was faithful in his kingdom when all of his enemies were subdued around him; how all the kings of Israel ruled with love and integrity for Jehovah. Yet, amidst the black backdrop of man's unfaithfulness, we find a glittering jewel in the breastplate of God's character: His faithfulness to His people!

Love is the strength of faithfulness. Great love produces unending and abiding faithfulness. Thankfully, the Lord's faithfulness to His elect is not based upon their love for Him, for our love can be fickle, it can wane as the moon and go in and out as the tide: "but because the Lord loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers", are the words of a faithful Creator. Our love for the Lord is an evidence of our election(I John 4:19), not the grounds of His love for us! Though we may please the Lord by our faithfulness to Him, we can not make the Lord love us any more than He already does. His faithfulness remains as everlasting as His love. Moses said it endured to "a thousand generations" and David said "thy faithfulness reacheth unto the clouds." Great men of God have always searched for words to aptly portray the unending faithfulness of God to His people!

It was the Lord's faithfulness that gave, Jeremiah, the weeping prophet, hope in a dismal day, "This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope… his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness." Every day, in all of our challenges and temptations, "God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able." This is where we get the promise that the Lord will not lay more upon us than we can bear. We may lay more upon ourselves than we can bear, our sin can bring great weights upon us, God is faithful who will not.

One of our greatest mistakes is to misjudge God when He chastens us. Like a loving Father, our Lord is faithful to chasten His children when they stray. He does not throw His children away or disown the people of His covenant. "If they break my statutes, and keep not my commandments; Then will I visit their transgression with the rod… I not utterly take from him, nor suffer my faithfulness to fail." Surely, children have become angry and made this mistake with their parents when they chastened them, not realizing it was for their own good.

He is equally willing to listen to us when we fail and forgive our sins, "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins". Though Satan will tell us to give up and surrender to a sin that has us bound, we are encouraged to continue to take it to the Lord. His forgiveness is as faithful as His love! Come, today, to the throne of God's grace and unending faithfulness and place thy cares in the hands of a faithful Creator!